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2018 NFL Mock Draft by sportsguru221 - 1.17
Published at 1/18/2018 1:39:47 PM

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Round 1

Picks 1-16
1. Browns: Josh Rosen, Quarterback, UCLA

I know Josh Rosen gave a not-so-subtle hint that he doesn't want to play for the Browns, but I don't care. He's going to have to grow up and learn how to play for the team that drafts him. Besides, there's a lot of time between now and April, and he very well could change his tune.

Rosen is the best QB prospect in this draft, and probably the best one to come out in terms of mechanics, arm talent, and potential since the Winston-Mariota year in 2015. The Browns have to pull the trigger on a QB early in 2018, even if they get a veteran like Alex Smith beforehand.

2. Giants: Saquon Barkley, Running Back, Penn State

The Giants need the future at the QB position, but what about the present at running back? They have quite possibly the worst group of running backs in the NFL, and it's a position they need to upgrade if they have any hope of Eli playing better. Maybe Eli would play better if he didn't have the worst o-line in the NFL protecting and the worst running game in the NFL supporting him.

Saquon Barkley is arguably the best player in this draft, and is considered an elite prospect at the position for good reason. He's better than any of the QB prospects available, and can come in and contribute right away for a Giants offense that desperately needs instant contributors.

3. Colts: Bradley Chubb, Defensive End, N.C. State

Assuming Andrew Luck comes back healthy, quarterback isn't an option here.

The Colts have done a decent job of attempting to upgrade their pass rush with additions like Jabaal Sheard and John Simon, however they could stand to get better in that department. The opportunity to get a pass rusher of Bradley Chubb's caliber doesn't come around too often, and the Colts should take advantage of it.

4. Browns: Minkah Fitzpatrick, Safety, Alabama

The Browns have a pair of promising young safeties in Devon Kindred and Jabril Peppers, however neither of them are coverage safeties and are much better suited to be strong safeties. Peppers ultimate future might even be at outside linebacker for the Browns. Regardless, Cleveland desperately needs a play making free safety at the back end of that defense.

Minkah Fitzpatrick was an absolute stud for a championship Bama defense. He could be the Earl Thomas of this Cleveland secondary that desperately needs to improve its coverage ability.

5. Broncos: Sam Darnold, Quarterback, USC

John Elway finally finds his quarterback to start rebuilding the offense around. The Broncos found out in 2017 what the rest of the football watching world already knew - Trevor Simien is a backup caliber quarterback. Paxton Lynch is a bust, and do I even need to explain how bad Brock Osweiler is?

Sam Darnold has his problems, but his potential is also very high and I think he's going into a solid situation where he won't be called to start right away and he'll be under solid tutelage in Denver.

6. Jets: Josh Allen, Quarterback, Wyoming

Josh McCown is an injury prone 39-year-old, and even if they manage to bring him back, they still need to draft a QB. I'm pretty sure the Jets braintrust doesn't consider Bryce Petty the future of the franchise.

Josh Allen will benefit from going into a situation where he doesn't have to start right away. Scouts rave about his intangibles and leadership ability, in addition to his raw physical skill set.

7. Buccaneers: Arden Key, Defensive End, LSU

Robert Ayers is a 32-year-old free agent who the Bucs shouldn't be committed to bringing back. Noah Spence has promise, but is always injured, and William Gholston is not a pass rushing threat. Needless to say, the Bucs need a defensive end.

Arden Key was far more disruptive than the numbers indicate at LSU. He consistently pressured opposing quarterbacks to force them into bad throws or plays that went nowhere. He'd be a welcome addition to a virtually non-existent Bucs pass rush.

8. Bears: Calvin Ridley, Wide Receiver, Alabama

The Bears really need to provide Trubisky with some receivers. Kevin White's body is made of glass and can't stay on the field, and with 3 other receivers all headed for free agency it leaves only Cameron Meredith and Markus Wheaton (yuck) at wideout for the Bears.

A player like Calvin Ridley has been drawing comparison to his fellow Alabama alum Amari Cooper, and Chicago could use that kind of difference maker among their pass catchers. Ridley is a little frail, but he's got decent size, is very quick, and is an extremely precise route runner.

9. 49ers: Joshua Jackson, Cornerback, Iowa

The 49ers have possibly the weakest CB corps in the NFL. Jimmie Ward and Jaquiski Tartt provide them with a pair of good young safeties, when they're healthy, but the corners desperately need to be upgraded.

Joshua Jackson has excellent size and play making ability for the cornerback position. He had 18 passes defended and 8 INT's for Iowa in 2017, and was a true ballhawk in the secondary.

10. Raiders: Da'Ron Payne, Defensive Tackle, Alabama

The Raiders could stand to upgrade every level of their defense, and it just so happens that the best defensive player available fills one of their biggest needs.

Da'Ron Payne is a beast. He'd be a much needed upgrade on a Raiders d-line that got consistently bullied in 2017.

11. Dolphins: Quenton Nelson, Offensive Guard, Notre Dame

The Dolphins had one of the least effective offensive lines in the NFL, and I believe it contributed to Jay Ajayi having a down year before he was shipped off to Philly (where he played much better.....wonder why??).

Quenton Nelson is viewed near universally in the scouting community as an absolute stud, and even though he's a guard he can be viewed as a steal here at 11. The Dolphins could go corner here, but Nelson is too good to pass up. Miami needs to upgrade it's o-line.

12. Bengals: Derwin James, Safety, Florida State

The Bengals safety play has been lackluster over the past 2 years. They could use some fresh young blood to boost the back end of the secondary.

Derwin James is clearly the best prospect on the board right now that also happens to fill a position of need. He is a hard hitting safety who can also step back and play some coverage, but he excels in stopping the run and playing close to the line of scrimmage. He's reminded scouts of Kam Chancellor.

13. Redskins: Vita Vea, Defensive Tackle, Washington

This pick is a little contingent on what happens with Kirk Cousins in the offseason, and as of right now it looks like he's on his way out, but you never know. They also need to address their issues on the d-line, particularly at nose tackle. Whenever Alfred Morris runs rampid over you, you know you could stand to upgrade your run defense. Vita Vea is a massive presence along the d-line who can definitely help in that department.

14. Packers: Denzel Ward, Cornerback, Ohio State

It seems like every offseason we are talking about the Packers needing a corner, and this one is no different.

Denzel Ward is considered the best one in the draft, and will be able to compete for a starting spot from day one with Damarious Randall and Kevin King. Outside linebacker is also an option here, but only if they end up releasing Clay Matthews.

15. Cardinals: Mike McGlinchey, Offensive Tackle, Notre Dame

The Cardinals have so many needs, and there are a lot of prospects that would be good picks here, so it's hard to pick just one.

Mike McGlinchey is the best prospect available who fills a big position of need, so he gets the nod here. Jared Veldeheer is injury prone and most likely a cap casualty. He hasn't been playing well lately anyway. D.J. Humphries actually played well when healthy, however they still need another tackle. McGlinchey is the best one in the draft and can play either left or right tackle for the Cardinals.

16. Ravens: Clelin Ferrell, Defensive End, Clemson

Terrell Suggs in 35, but fresh off an 11 sack campaign has shown no signs of slowing down. However, Suggs is really the only legitimate pass rusher the Ravens have, and you have to think that Suggs will eventually show his age and start declining, it's only human nature.

Clelin Ferrell is good value at this juncture, and was a main cog on a dominant Clemson d-line in 2017.

Picks 1-16

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